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BIG MOMENTS - May 8, 2009: WSH @ PIT

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The plays that turn the tide in every game of playoff action -- that is what the beauty of hockey history is built on.

Check back every night following all the 2009 playoff action to witness NHL.com's game-changing moment from each game, as well as the rest of each game's goals, saves and hits.

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Washington at Pittsburgh - Game 4

A) Gonchar's screen shot - Washington had scored early, but Pittsburgh was quick to answer. As a first-period power play wound down, Sergei Gonchar skated through the neutral zone unchecked against the Capitals' defense. After crossing over the blue line Gonchar fired a slap shot from behind a screen, beating a blinded Simeon Varlamov.

Gonchar's score gave the momentum back to the Pens, moments after the Capitals had taken an early lead.





B) Ovie sits, Tank tallies - With the Capitals down a goal late in the first period, they were pressing and had a great opportunity to score thanks to a holding-the-stick penalty on Brooks Orpik. However this time, instead of scoring a power-play goal, Alex Ovechkin took a costly tripping penalty for upending Sergei Gonchar.

On the ensuing four-on-four Ruslan Fedotenko put the puck past Capitals goaltender Simeon Varlamov, with assists going to Jordan Staal and Rob Scuderi, extending the Penguins lead to 3-1. So instead of having an opportunity to tie the game early in the tilt, the Capitals found themselves down by a pair, with the Penguins going on the power play.


C) Clark gets Caps close - With Washington trailing by two goals late in the second period, the Capitals needed a spark to get them back in the game. It was provided by Mike Green, who skated through multiple defenders with the puck before wheeling to the right side of the net and wristing a shot on Marc-Andre Fleury. While Fleury made the stop, the puck bounced behind him to a waiting Chris Clark, who quickly put it into the net to pull the Caps within one.

Clark's tally reignited Washington with a full period left to play, but it wouldn't have been possible if not for the slick moves of Green to set up the score.


D) Sid scores - The Penguins entered the third period looking to rebound from Chris Clark's goal late in the second that made it a one-goal game. Only now, their captain proceeded to take the reins one more time.

Sid the Kid didn't disappoint. Flying in on a two-on-one, Miroslav Satan feathered a beautiful saucer pass between the defenseman's legs, giving Sidney Crosby an easy tap into a gaping net. The goal slowed the Capitals' momentum, stemmed the tide of shots on Marc-Andre Fleury and restored the Penguins' two-goal lead.



E) Talbot beats Varlamov - A shorthanded goal by Milan Jurcina had given the Capitals life early in the third period, but after eight minutes of holding down Washington's attack, the Pens cleared the puck and Maxime Talbot got back at Varlamov after having been robbed earlier in the third. Talbot picked the puck up off the boards near the red line. With two Capitals racing in front of him, Talbot raced past both of them and fired a shot from the left faceoff circle.

The puck got through Simeon Varlamov, giving the Pens a two-goal edge. Talbot's score effectively ended any chance of a comeback for the Caps, evening the series at 2-2.

FINAL SCORE:  Penguins 5, Capitals 3









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